Volvo S80 A performance sedan that offers top notch luxury, outstanding handling and so much more.

suspension problem

  #1  
Old 05-07-2005, 09:15 PM
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Default suspension problem

Got a question about a 2000 S80 T6. The rear of suspension of the car is really unstable. When going over slight bumps or uneven surfaces in the road, the rear of the car will bounce around and seem to lose traction with the surface of the road. when I go around a curve at any speed and hit a slight bump in the road, the rear of the car will start to slide around on the road, simply because some component of the suspension is causing instability in the rear of the vehicle. When I hit a bump, it feels like i am driving on metal wheels...hardly any absorption of shock at all. Accompanying these symptoms is a vibrating/groaning sound coming from the rear of the vehicle especially when going over a rough surface in the road. I know the volvo has sporty suspension but the car weighs around 3600 lbs and should not be unstable on the road. What could this problem be, and can I fix it on my own? [sm=dontgetit.gif]
 
  #2  
Old 05-08-2005, 02:45 AM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Stand behind the car and push down on the suspension and see if it keeps bouncing.
Sounds like you might have worn shocks.
If you push on it once and it keeps bouncing they are bad.
 
  #3  
Old 05-08-2005, 03:02 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

I checked out the shocks and the car really doesn't bounce up and down at all. It's more of a feeling of instability when going over bumps--the front of the car will go over the bump fine, but when the rear wheels hit, the initial bump is really hard like my wheels were metal or something, or there was no suspension at all...and then the car takes a half a second to restablize as it kinda fishtails a little..kinda like the wheels are vibrating out of contact with the road. I have to be really careful when going around curves because if I hit a bump when going around a curve even at slower speeds, the rear of the car will vibrate towards the outside of the curve almost as if I hit an ice patch for half a second. This causes me to have to compensate with the steering wheel a little to get the car back to going straight. Any bump makes a TON of noise inside the car when the rear wheels hit--it almost feels like it's shaking the car apart from the shock of hitting even just a little bump. I mean, i've ridden in Corvettes that ride smoother than this car does. the vibrating/groaning/creaking sound comes from the rear and is greater when there are passengers in the trunk. I hear it even when driving on smooth roads, but more so when going over bumps. Would the sway bar have anything to do with it? Thanks for any help, it's much appreciated!

Jonathan
 
  #4  
Old 05-08-2005, 08:16 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

sorry...when passengers are in the back seat, not in the trunk. LOL [sm=oopssign.gif]
 
  #5  
Old 05-08-2005, 08:22 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Check the sway bar and the end links.Also check the control arm bushings.
If they all look good it might still be a bad shock causing it.
 
  #6  
Old 05-08-2005, 09:58 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Tech, could it be the upper shock bushing??
 
  #7  
Old 05-09-2005, 12:43 AM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Could be but the front one are the ones that go bad.The rear ones don't really go bad fast like the front ones.
 
  #8  
Old 05-29-2005, 11:24 AM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Hey, I went back to check out the shocks again and I realized that when I push down on the car bumper, the car really does bounce a lot more than it should. Apparently, when you jump on the bumper and make it oscillate up and down, the car should stabilize after about 1.5 bounces. Mine was going for about 3.5 oscillations--way too much, right? I just didn't notice it before, cuz the last couple oscillations were pretty small. I compared it to another car, though, one with good shocks and noticed the difference right away. So, taking your advice, tech, shocks are about 90 bucks apiece for the rear ones...should I replace the front ones as well and do you recommend that I fix this at home in my driveway? or is it a dealer/mechanic type repair?

Thanks for all the help so far!

Jonathan
 
  #9  
Old 05-29-2005, 02:49 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

The rears will be easy for you to do at home.
If you do the fronts then you will need special tools and it is pretty dangerous to do.
I would leave the fronts to someone that has done them many times and has the tools.
 
  #10  
Old 05-29-2005, 03:35 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Tech, aren't the fronts simply Mcpherson?? I just use a couple of spring compressors and voila. As an aside, do you fill the struts with oil prior to inserting the shocks or does Volvo use a sealed assembly where you have to change the cartridge also?
 
  #11  
Old 05-30-2005, 01:10 AM
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Default RE: suspension problem

It is a cartrige assembly.
Yes you use a spring compressor to change it out.
The S80 springs are tight and you have to be very careful when doing it.
I saw one in the shop take off and put a hole the ceiling in the shop.
 
  #12  
Old 05-30-2005, 06:51 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Years ago when I first tackled the Macpherson struts I had an inexpensive set of spring compressors...................I too had a bad experience and learned very quickly that one has to obtain a good set of compressors with lock wires. No problems since! Incidently I changed out the front brakes with a set of Brembo rotors and NAPA dustless pads...................eliminated the dusting problems with Volvo pads.
 
  #13  
Old 05-30-2005, 11:59 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Yes if you have a good set then it is cake to do it.
 
  #14  
Old 06-02-2005, 08:27 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Ok, replaced the rear shocks and now the car rides much better. The instability is gone, and the car drives much better around curves and over bumps in the road. Cost a little bit, but the car finally feels like the Volvo I wanted when I bought it. Thanks for the help, everyone, much appreciated.
 
  #15  
Old 06-02-2005, 08:39 PM
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Default RE: suspension problem

Thats what we are all here for!!!!
We are all here to help others!!!!
 
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